- Academic Research and Writing Tips / Tutorial

Common Mistakes in a Custom Dissertation or PhD Thesis

Would you give a technical report on the Chinese Oil Marketing to a dentist? Yet, often students try to write a dissertation about something they know nothing about. Common mistakes in writing a dissertation or a PhD thesis is not planning ahead and setting aside enough time to do a quality paper. Often creating a great dissertation means persevering even when the criticism of an instructor does not seem logical. In the long run the instructor is helping to create a professional dissertation that will be valued by the student and by the doctoral committee. Avoiding many common mistakes will make the final draft a work of art.

PhD Thesis Dissertation

Often the first mistake the student makes is not having a true hypothesis. A hypothesis is a proposal intended to explain certain observations or it can be defined as a tentative theory about a concept not yet verified. In simple terms, a hypothesis is a clever idea that will be observed to find if it is true. Often writing a hypothesis is difficult for the student to put into words that explain what the student is studying or observing. A thesis is really a hypothesis.

Another common mistake in writing a dissertation is not explaining different terms the writer uses. Each technical term used in a dissertation should be defined with a reference backing up the explanation. Whatever the subject, no matter whether it for a traditional college, art school or online degrees, students must be meticulous about referencing. It is senseless to lose points for something as perfunctory as missing definitions. It is vital to include them in each and every case.

Often the dissertation is written with phrases that should be avoided such as true, bad, well, soon, today, based on, as the basis of, and etc. Using too many adverbs causes the reader to question the relevance of the paper. The same is true about using too many adjectives in a paragraph.

Another common mistake is using a passive voice. The active voice should be used throughout the dissertation. Often the passive voice is used with terms such as has, was, were, have, and etc. Avoid these and use active verbs giving more meaning to the sentence.

A common mistake in dissertation is using correct grammar. Nothing will stop the doctoral committee than finding incorrect grammar and punctuation. Carefully read the dissertation before each stage is given to the doctorate committee. Have someone proofread it and then read it out loud to correct any mistakes.

A not-so-common mistake in dissertation is drawing conclusions about the data without having the right evidence to prove the claim. A person needs to be careful about drawing conclusions on the evidence presented. While the cause of something may seem obvious, a person cannot draw a conclusion without evidence.

Often common mistakes in dissertations have to do with the overall organization of it. The student should use a progression of ideas within the paragraphs and leading from one paragraph to the next. The structure should flow easily from one section to another. Serious thoughts need to be given about each heading and the resources needed to support these. Consideration should be given to knowing that each claim in the paragraphs is supported with evidence.

A not-so-common mistake is found with the literature review in that the students may fail to use scholarly journals to support the dissertation. A thorough research of the topic should be completed. Web sites should be carefully reviewed before using them.

A common mistake is not using quotation marks around quotes or failing to cite the sources when quotes are used. This is especially important in a dissertation. All quotes should be cited with the correct style used such as APA or MLA.

Little mistakes can be annoying to the doctorate team. Therefore, proofreading the dissertation several times is needed. It is also important to work with the doctorate team or instructor on the dissertation or the PhD thesis. Showing pride in a person's work is a vital part of having a successful dissertation. Regardless if a dissertation is for a traditional or online PhD degrees, remember to invest the time to do it right.